A small city in Ohio is taking an unusual step to try to combat the opioid epidemic. Addicts who are revived by emergency responders using the overdose-reversing drug Naloxone are being charged with a misdemeanor in Washington Court House, Ohio.
City attorney Mark Pitstick told Here & Now‘s Robin Young that in Ohio, addicts who overdose have the right to refuse medical treatment — and stay on the streets.
Pitstick says that charging a person with a misdemeanor can help the situation. “We can put them in jail for a period of time, usually 3 to 5 days, we’ll bring them down off their high on heroin, and at that point in time we can talk to them about treatment,” he says.